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  • Writer's pictureNiamh Columb

Music and the mind

From time to time we as humans experience stress from our daily lives whether it be from a busy work schedule, studying for exams or something that is completely out of our comfort zone. But how do we cope with this stress? The answer for the most part is music. Music has an energy that stimulates the physical, emotional and the social needs of an individual. Music therapy touches the soul. It acts as a barrier between our mental state of mind and the natural rhythms of the body.

Anxiety disrupts any positive feelings we have and so creates negative energies that are unexpressed. If no control is taken against anxiety this can lead to physical harm of the body. Stress and anxiety needs a medium to escape – it needs a voice and music acts as this voice to do something creative with that energy. (Listen to the lyrics of Katy Perry and Eminem for example).

It has been proven that listening to music can not only settle your heart rate but it controls the release of hormones of the endocrine system. The body responds to stress by releasing the hormone cortisol and the enzyme alpha-amylase which is found in your saliva. A lot of scientific research has been carried out on the link between music and the mind. Scientists have tested out the effects of both classical and nature sounds on the levels of cortisol and alpha-amylase. The results of this experiment found that the group of people that listened to classical music showed that the levels of alpha-amylase and cortisol went back to normal more quickly than those who listened to sounds of nature.

Therefore, proving that listening to relaxing sounds helps the body to return to a non-stressed state of mind more quickly, in a shorter response. Preventing the body from getting worn out. Thus music improves stress and overall health.

Music washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life” – Berthold Auerbach.

Love Níamh x

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